11 September, 2017
Whether it is life sciences, technology, innovation or development, what is the common feature of scientific research? The common feature in all areas of scientific research is that the findings seek to address shared societal challenges. Challenges such as climate change, healthcare provision or clean and safe energy, food and water supply that affect citizens globally.
Dedicated scientists, at the Babraham Institute and around the world, perform research to expand the frontiers of knowledge thereby addressing societal challenges. Yet, making the scientific research process more effective and efficient will require the active participation of scientists together with people from all walks of life. Why is making scientific research more inclusive, transparent and efficient important? Because it is inherently good for the quality of science. This in turn enhances competitiveness and contributes to economic growth and job creation. In addition, further mutual engagement of scientists and citizens contributes to making societies more democratic and fair; it is our right as citizens to participate in discussions that might affect our future or that of our children – and this requires us to develop an informed opinion.
Whether you are an economist, a professor in maritime ecosystems, a midwife, a molecular biologist, a plumber or a personal trainer, what are your concerns about deforestation, genetically modified organisms and crops, or personalised medicine? Participate in the scientific research process and dare to share your views with the experts and challenge theirs! Only through engaging can scientists adapt their research strategies to answer your specific questions. But how?
In this context, the Babraham Institute is participating in the European Commission funded ORION project. ORION is a €3.2M consortium of nine core partners* and many associate partners** whose goal is to embed in research organisations the principles required for making research more accessible and to align it with societal values, needs and expectations. Research made participatory and accessible is a new strategy in the European Research Area known as ‘Open Science’.
During the coming four years, the Babraham Institute will develop open dialogues and other innovative approaches to bring science closer to society - and vice versa, providing opportunities for you to have your say. Particular projects will look at research and funding strategies, risks and opportunities of innovative technologies, and multi-stakeholder scientific projects in fundamental research in bioscience.
Whether you are a team leader, a postdoc, a PhD student or a staff scientist at the institute or a member of the local, regional or national community, do get in touch with us to participate in this collaborative experiment that is Open Science!
Dr. Emma Martinez-Sanchez
Public Engagement Officer
*ORION core participating organisations:
Research Performing Organisations:
Babraham Institute (UK)
Fundacio Centre de Regulacio Genomica (Spain)
The Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (Germany)
Central European Institute of Technology - Masaryk University (Czech Republic)
Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona (Spain)
Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Spain)
Jihomoravske Centrum pro Mezinarodni Mobilitu (Czech Republic)
Research supporting organisations:
Vetenskap & Allmänhet (Sweden)
Fondazione ANT Italia onlus (Italy)
**ORION Associated partners:
EU-LIFE Building and promoting Excellence in Life Sciences in (Europe)
Helmholtz Association (Germany)
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (United Kingdom)
NEURON Fund for Support of Science (Czech Republic)
eLIFE (United Kingdom)
European Citizen Science Association (Germany)
FOSTER platform (Portugal)
11 September 2017